Corvair College #32, 27 Feb. in TX, Filling up fast.


Corvair College #32 is set for San Marcos Texas. 27 Feb – 1 Mar, The local hosts are Shelley Tumino and Kevin Purtee. The people who brought you CC#22 and CC#28 .

I spoke with Shelley last night, and she pointed out that we only have table space for 13 more engine builders. We can sign up many more guests than this, but we have a finite amount of work tables and space for them at this college, and we are getting close to that limit. If you are planning on working on an engine at CC#32, but have not signed up, now is the time to do so.


We have not picked out a date to cut off the sign up, but we are thinking about January 15th, but I am sure that the table space will be gone before this. Do not miss this opportunity, it is the only College we will have in the south central US this year.


This College is at the same location as CC #28. Sign up has now been active since the start of November,  The event is now just 53 days away.





To learn more about colleges:

Corvair College reference page



Near the end of Corvair College#22, we took a moment for Kevin, myself, Grace, Scoob E and Shelley to have a portrait with the tail of Kevin’s aircraft.


Above, ScoobE wrapped in blankets  at  CC #22. When you only weigh 9 pounds, you don’t have a lot of spare insulation. When it got good and chilly, Scoob E enjoyed a pile of blankets on his chair at the College.


You can not predict weather in Texas, but you can be assured of good times. In Texas we have previously had 72 degrees and sunny, and a 28 degree blizzard with 45 mph winds, at the same college. The college goes on just the same. We are in a large secure hangar, but it has limited climate control. Prepared builders pack several levels of clothing.



CC#22: Above, Kevin and I talk policy by the tail of his Pietenpol, while Greg Crouchley from Rhode Island eyeballs an engine on the test stand in the background. A handful of builders present had never seen a running Corvair before and were duly impressed with the smoothness and the ease that it started with on a 45° day.

Kevin briefs other builders on his installation.  Start to finish the plane took 17 years to complete. My Golden Rule of Experimental Aviation is “Persistence Pays.”

 At CC #22: Pietenpol builder Mark Chouinard of Oklahoma, at left above, standing next to him is Robert Caldwell, who ran his engine on his birthday at Corvair College 21. He is also a Pietenpol builder.


The last day of the College #22 brought excellent weather and sunny skies. Kevin flies his Pietenpol there.


When you’re a badass like Kevin, any hat you wear is The Hat of Power.



Above, at Corvair College #24, we awarded The Cherry Grove Trophy to Pietenpol builders and flyers  Kevin  and his very supportive better half Shelley   Their frequent appearances at airshows far from Texas, their constant promotion of ‘learn build and fly’ and the hosting of the highly successful Corvair college #22 made them the right people to be awarded the trophy in 2012. They work as a team, and it was appropriate to award it to both of them. Kevin’s frank discussions of the effort required to achieve something of real lasting value in personal flight reach many builders. Their  ‘lead by personal example’ philosophy has shown a great number of builders a path to success. -ww

For a good read on Kevin’s personal perspective on homebuilding, read his story at this link:

Guest Writer: Pietenpol builder/flyer Kevin Purtee

3 Replies to “Corvair College #32, 27 Feb. in TX, Filling up fast.”

  1. Hi William,
    I hope that you won’t mind a comment here……..
    In reading Kevin’s blog, I got a light turned on.
    Here’s my suggestion. While you have covered very well a lot of things necessary to build a hime-built aircraft, Some potential builders might need some more basic stuff. Things like “How much space will I need for building?” Also where this space should be located. At or near home? Or at an airport?, What other choices on location? Type of building, etc.?

    Next, where do I get information on kits available? Where can I get parts and pieces? Who does body forming as a service? If not a kit, Where can one get tooling and materials? Things like that.

    Finally, it seems like (to me) it would be helpful to break down the building process into steps just like you have done for the engine assembly. Something like Step one identify space/location. Get tooling needed. What type of welder will I need? Step 2 build the frame, Step three build the empinage. Next form and install frame coverings. (just examples ..I don’t know the sequence myself)

    Bob Helt

    1. “Begin. The rest is easy”. The biggest stumbling block for a guy wanting to build his first airplane is simply getting started. When you run into challenges as you go, you’ll then have specific questions to research. You’ll learning will become focused, you’ll be less overwhelmed, and you’ll have a lot of fun along the way.

      I say that as a guy who had zero building experience, and zero engine experience, and who is now flying an airplane & engine that I built myself.

      Try to get to a Corvair College or two. It’s well worth it. You’ll make some lifelong friends.

      Pat Hoyt

    2. Hi Bob – There are several books on “how to build a kitplane” that cover the questions you’re talking about. Ron Wantajja has one or two good ones. The Tony Bingelis series is extremely helpful (though WW will caution you that some of the advice Mr. Bingelis gave is obsolete). Certainly his thought on picking a project and figuring out where you’re going to build it are valid.

      Kevin Purtee

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